Summary: A sermon to help men to recognize the divinely created differences between men and women.
"The Adornment that Attracts" Pt. 2
1 Peter 3:7 Likewise, husbands, live with your wives in an understanding way, showing honor to the woman as the weaker vessel, since they are heirs with you of the grace of life, so that your prayers may not be hindered.
8 Finally, all of you, have unity of mind, sympathy, brotherly love, a tender heart, and a humble mind.
9 Do not repay evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary, bless, for to this you were called, that you may obtain a blessing.
Intro: First, let me make sure that we understand what kind of adornment we are talking about and where it's at. Peter is speaking of spiritual adornment and he tells us where this adornment is at. It is in the "inner man of the heart" What can we find in this passage to learn about adornment that is attractive? I am going to focus on just three things although there are many more here.
I think I'm safe in saying that the word "...likewise..." is the key our understanding of this passage. Basically, Peter is saying what is "good for the goose is good for the gander!" Men are to have spiritual adornments too. They are to adorn the "...inner man..." and make this inner man as attractive as possible for Christ.
I. Adorn Yourself with Respect
To "...dwell..." is to live together qualified by the phrase "...according to knowledge..." There must be honor given unto the wife and we have several reasons given for the foundation of that honor. But the word τιμη honor, signifies maintenance as well as respect; - maintain, provide for the wife. This relationship should be characterized by the recognition of:
a. The spousal consideration
The phrase "...according to knowledge..." involves what one writer referred to as "intelligent recognition." The husband is to live with his wife with consideration for her. Both men and women are "vessels" and both are weak in the sight of our Creator but the wife is generally speaking the weaker of the two and the husband should take that into account.
It is a saying of the Jews (s),
"if thy wife be short of stature, bow thyself, and whisper to her.
The meaning of the proverb is, that he ought to suit himself to her capacity and weakness:
Weaker does not mean she is weaker intellectually or even spiritually and the next phrase speaks to that issue.
b. The spiritual consideration
Joint-heirs of the grace of life (sunklēronomoi charitos zōēs). Late double compound found in an Ephesian inscription and the papyri, in N.T. only here, Romans 8:17; Ephesians 3:6; Hebrews 11:9. God's gift of life eternal belongs to woman as well as to man. In the eyes of God the wife may be superior to the husband, not merely equal. Robertson's Word Pictures
c. The supplicants' consideration
Hindered: The word means, literally, to knock in; make an incision into; and hence, generally, to hinder or thwart Galatians 5:7; 1 Thessolonians 2:18. Some, however, read ἐκκόπτεσθαι, to cut off or destroy. Vincents Word Studies
How many of you have ever had a dropped call, or got cut off while you were on the phone or if you are like us, lost your cable signal during a storm? The prayers of a man who does not given due consideration to his wife will find that his prayers go unanswered. Not giving your wife due consideration "short circuits" your prayers. We could say that the success or failure of your prayer life is in direct relation to the spousal and spiritual consideration you give to your wife.
II. Adorn Yourself with Righteousness
"Finally, be ye all of one mind... Not that the apostle was about to conclude his epistle; but having finished his exhortations respecting the obedience of subjects to magistrates, and of servants to their masters, and the duties incumbent on husbands and wives, he proceeds to sum up what he had further to say, in general rules; which regarded all sorts of Christians, magistrates and subjects, masters and servants, husbands and wives, parents and children, old and young, rich and poor, of whatsoever state, age, sex, or condition; and so the Arabic version renders it, "the sum of the commandment is"; and the Ethiopic version, "the sum of all is this"; namely, what follows; "be ye all of one mind"; whatever difference there might be in their natural and civil relation and character; and which is to be understood not of the sameness of affection to one another, or of an humble and condescending spirit, disposition, and carriage to each other, for these are expressed in some following exhortations; but of sameness of judgment with respect to the doctrines and ordinances of the Gospel, in which saints should be perfectly joined together in the same mind, and in the same judgment; for as the church is but one body, of which Christ is the head, there should be but one mind in it; even as there is but one Spirit of God, who convinces, enlightens, and leads into truth; and but one heart and way, given to fear the Lord; and there is but one hope of our calling, or to which we are called; and one way to it, and therefore ought to agree in everything respecting the way, the truth, and the life; though in things which do not, should bear with one another; and there is but one Lord, who gives the same laws and ordinances to one as to another, and which are to be kept a like by all; and there is but one faith, one doctrine of faith, which is uniform and all of a piece, and but one rule and standard of faith, the sacred Scriptures, and but one baptism, to be administered in the same way, and upon the same sort of subjects, and in the same name of the Father, Son, and Spirit; and but one God and Father of all; all belong to the same family, and therefore should preserve a unity of spirit and mind, and speak the same things; which is necessary to carry on the worship of God, honorably and regularly, to the glorifying of him, and for the peace, comfort, and safety of the churches of Christ, having compassion one of another; or sympathizing with each other, both in prosperity and adversity, whether in temporal or spiritual things; rejoicing with them that rejoice in Christ, make their boast of him, and have communion with him, and who are also blessed with health of body, and a competency of the good things of this life; and weeping with them that weep for the loss of goods, relations, &c. and being in bonds and afflictions; or because of sin, the absence of Christ, and the temptations of Satan; and being concerned also for such who are fallen into immorality, or error, and heresy; endeavoring to restore them out of the one or the other, in a spirit of meekness and tenderness: to all which they should be engaged by the example of Christ, the sympathizing high priest; by the consideration of the divine compassion to them, both in a providential way, and in a way of grace; and on account of their union and relation to each other, as members of the same body: Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible